Finalists for 2015 Service to America Medals Announced

Accomplishments range from a natural disaster advance warning system to Ebola outbreak response.

Thirty federal employees are finalists for the 2015 Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals, known as the Oscars of government.

“The finalists’ achievements include creating new treatments for cancer and sickle cell disease, instituting lifesaving fire safety improvements for commercial airliners, developing a geographically targeted cellphone alert system to warn of dangers from tornadoes and flash floods, finding alternatives to the use of antibiotics in poultry, and coordinating the U.S. response to the Ebola crisis in West Africa,” said the May 3 press release from the Partnership for Public Service.

The nonprofit group hands out the annual awards to career federal employees who have contributed to the health, safety and well-being of Americans through government. The finalists, culled from nearly 500 nominations for 2015, vie for eight awards in different categories, including Federal Employee of the Year.

Winners receive cash awards ranging from $3,000 to $10,000.

Here’s the list of the 2015 finalists:

Career Achievement Medal Finalists

Robert J. Kavlock, Environmental Protection Agency
Hyun Soon Lillehoj, Agricultural Research Service
Charles E. Milam, Defense Department
Dr. Steven A. Rosenberg, National Institutes of Health

Call to Service Medal Finalists

Gretchen K. Campbell, National Institute of Standards and Technology
Stephanie L. Hogan, Environmental Protection Agency
Bridget Lynn Roddy, State Department
Adam R. Schildge, Federal Transit Administration

Citizen Services Medal Finalists

Lucile Jones, U.S. Geological Survey
Constantine P. Sarkos, Federal Aviation Administration
Kevin G. Stricklin and the Mine Emergency Team, Labor Department, Mine Safety and Health Administration
John P. Wagner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Homeland Security and Law Enforcement Medal Finalists

Robert Bunge, Michael Gerber and the Wireless Emergency Alerts Team, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Weather Service
Anna M. Dozier, Employee Benefits Security Administration
John B. Price, Homeland Security Department, Science and Technology Directorate
Ron Ross, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Management Excellence Medal Finalists

Kevin L. Hannes and the FEMA Operation Precious Cargo Team, Federal Emergency Management Agency
Edward C. Hugler, Labor Department
Susan S. Kelly and the Transition to Veterans Program Office, Defense Department
Edward J. Ramotowski and the Consular Affairs Team, State Department
Steven W. Zander, U.S. Air Force 

National Security and International Affairs Medal Finalists

Mia Beers and the U.S. Ebola Disaster Assistance Response Team, U.S. Agency for International Development
Natasha M. de Marcken, U.S. Agency for International Development
Timothy A. Blades, Paul S. Gilmour and Team, Edgewood Chemical Biological Center, U.S. Maritime Administration
Peter A. Morrison and the Solid State Laser Team, U.S. Navy 
Rob Thayer and the Syria Emergency Food Assistance Team, U.S. Agency for International Development

Science and Environment Medal Finalists

Richard Alan Feely, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Jacob E. Moss, Environmental Protection Agency
Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers, National Institutes of Health
Jean C. Zenklusen, Carolyn Hutter and the Cancer Genome Atlas Team, National Institutes of Health

The 2015 finalists will be honored May 6 on Capitol Hill as part of Public Service Recognition Week. Winners will be honored on Oct. 7 at a gala in Washington.

(Image via STILLFX/